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Buffalo's Future Mayor Harvard Bound

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – Buffalo Mayor-elect Byron Brown will be heading to Cambridge, Massachusetts Wednesday morning. He's going to Harvard.

Byron Brown will be attending the Kennedy School of Government for a three-day seminar this week.

"I'm looking forward to getting information that will help me get a fast start and hit the ground running," said Brown.

But Brown won't be the only newly elected mayor attending the prestigious school.

Brown will be joined by twenty other city mayors from twelve other states. Jeanne Shaheen, the former Governor of New Hampshire, is the director of the Institute of Politics, a sponsor of the program.

She said they try to put city leaders in touch with experts who can assist in various areas.

"For example, we have a panel on managing your city in the time of crisis to help Mayors if they think of any crisis they may be facing," said Shaheen. "We have a panel looking at leadership. We also have one looking at mayors in the media. So, we are trying to give them a big picture view of some of things they will deal with as mayors."

Shaheen said the sessions also provide information from hiring a receptionist, to dealing with staffers and learning what to do with campaign workers. But what about patronage jobs?

"We do have a session on ethics which will touch on some of those issues, also offer a session on inner government affairs," said Shaheen. "We think both of those will help provide some guidance as mayors try to deal with those issues."

And there will be a session on city financing. But Brown said he also wants to learn how to be the most effective for Buffalo.

"I want to hear ideas from Harvard University's Kennedy School and what mayors have done in other parts of the country to be effective in moving their communities forward and strengthening the cities they represent," said Brown.

Brown's visit to the Kennedy School of Government is free to the city. It is funded by the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the Institute of Politics.